Question

(a) How big (projectile diameter) would a metallic iron asteroid with a velocity of 17 km/s have to be to produce 250 kilotons of energy on impact? The distance from the impact does not matter, the density of a metal asteroid is 8000 kg/m3 and the impact angle is 45°. Assume you are impacting a relatively dense rock with a density of 3000 kg/m3.

(b) How massive would a comet with a velocity of 51 km/s have to be to produce that amount of energy on impact? Assume you are impacting into a relatively dense rock with a density of 3000 kg/m3 at an impact angle of 45°. Compare this answer to the one for (a) – what are the competing effects of density and velocity on the amount of energy produced?

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